Thursday, January 12, 2012

How to Create An E-Book Cover For Free With Gimp- Part 2 of 2

How to Create a Cover For Your Ebook For Free With GIMP - Part 2 of 2

By Steve Bracken

Assuming you have created your front cover for your 3D ebook cover from the free templates you downloaded, now you have to save it before you go on.

1. Click on File - Save and give it a name. It will be saved as a .xcf file, which maintains the layers of text and graphics so that you can go back later and change them.

2. Now you want to turn it into a flattened image that you can stick onto your ebook cover template. Click on Dialogs - Layers. In the main Gimp window you will see a list of all your layers. Click on the eye next to the background layer. You should now have just your cover with no white background (just a check pattern).

3. Right Click on any one of the layers and select Merge Visible. In the window that opens click on crop to bottom layer (your main page shape) and discard invisible layers (your background). Click OK. You now have your front cover prepared for sticking onto the cover template. Click Select - All, then Edit - Copy.

4. Now go to File - Open, and select the cover01.psd that you unzipped earlier. Open it. Click File - SaveAs and change the name so that you don't accidentally overwrite your copy of cover01 - you will be using again and again once you get hooked on creating your covers! ;)

5. If the layers are not visible in the main gimp window, click on Dialogs - Layers. Click on the layer called 3D Render. Click Layers - New Layer. Now click Edit - Paste Into.

6.Click on Layer - Anchor Layer. In the main gimp window change the opacity to about 40% so that you can see the ebook cover underneath your front cover. This will make it easier to position and shape the cover properly in the next steps.

7. Click on Tools - Transform - Scale. Click on the top left corner of your cover and drag it down until it has the same height as the spine of the ebook cover. Click Scale on the window that opens. Now click Tools - Transform - Move. Hold down Shift and click on your cover and move it into position so that the side is aligned with the spine. You might have to try Move and Scale a few times to get this right. It could also help if you zoom in on the image by clicking on 200% on the bottom of your image window.

8. Now select Tools - Tranform - Perspective. Click on the bottom right of your front cover and drag it into the front of the ebook cover underneath to get your 3d appearance. When you are happy that all the corners fit, click Transform in the window that opens.

9. Now you have it! Your first ebook cover. All you need to do now is to save it, and then save it again in a format you can use in your ebooks and on your websites.
Click File - Save As. Then save it as an xcf file for later modification.
Then save as again, but this time select the file extension at the bottom of the save window and choose jpeg.
Click Export in the window that opens and set the quality of the jpeg using the slider to give a file a balance between file size and image quality. Finito!
Get the updated versions of this tutorial with screen-shots and video as soon as they're available at

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How to Create An E-Book Cover For Free With Gimp- Part 1 of 2

Free EBook Covers - How to Create Yours For Free With GIMP - Part 1 of 2

By Steve Bracken

If you want to create an eBook cover by yourself, without buying eBook creator cover software or buying Photoshop, or paying a graphics designer to do it for you, then read on. I'm not promising to make an artist of you! I don't claim any artistic talents myself, just the technical know-how you will need to create your ecover!
1. Download and install GIMP - a free open source image manipulation program. If you have time, you can have lots of fun getting to know what you can do with it. If you don't have much time, be careful not to get distracted from the task in hand - follow these steps to get your ebook cover finished! Then, you can play ;)

Just Google GIMP and you will find the download page easily.
2.Get yourself a free template eBook cover by googling 'free ebook cover'. The one I use in this tutorial will probably be the first site you come across at
There are three types of covers to choose from - for this tutorial I will be using the first type, called 'cover01'
Download and save this to your hard drive. Then extract all files to a convenient folder.

You will be using the file called 'cover01.psd' later in the Gimp software.

3.Start up Gimp.

4.First we have to create the front of your cover. This is the part you have to design for yourself to suit your own eBook. I'll show you how to do a simple one here and then you can go and play around with it when you have time.
After that we need to stick it onto the cover we've already downloaded to make your eBook cover and save it properly for you to use in your eBooks.

5.Click on File - New

6.Set Width and Height at 500 pixels each and click OK.

7.You should now have the Gimp window and a new Image window open. Go to the image window, select Layer - New Layer. A New Layer window will open up. Give your new layer a name eg Front Cover and click OK.

8.On the main Gimp window, you should have a list of the layers so far; Front Cover and Background. Click on the Front Cover layer to make sure that's the one you are working on.

Now, select Tools - Selection Tools - Rectangle Select
Click any where on your image window and drag to create a rectangle to represent the front of your eBook.

9.Now we are going to colour in your cover. Once you start to play with Gimp you can do all sorts of fun things here. For now, we are going to create what's called a gradient i.e. the page will have a colour that blends gradually from the foreground colour to the background colour.
Pick your foreground and background colours by clicking on the little coloured boxes on the main Gimp window.
Go to Tools - Paint Tools - Blend Tool

Click any where in the middle of your rectangle near the top and drag down to the bottom and release. Your page will be filled with your chosen colours.
Play around with clicking and dragging from and to different places and with your foreground and background colours until you get something you like.

10.At this point you could insert your photo and or text. For now we'll keep it simple and just add text.

Click on Tools - Text.
Click on your cover where you want to start the text. A text editor will open up. Type in your text in this editor. To change the colour, font, size etc of your text click on Dialogs - Tool Options. A Dialog will open in the main Gimp window where you can click on the properties of your text and play around with it.

11.Add text wherever you need to. Each block of text will be added as a new layer so that you can edit it at any stage by clicking on Tools - Text and then clicking on the text you want to change.

12.Now you have the basics of your front cover!

Next we have to attach this to our ebook template.
By the way if you have trouble finding the download for the cover01 ebook cover I've mentioned above you can get it here:
For the latest on this tutorial go to Steve's blog at and get the version with screenshots and video as soon as it's available!

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Thursday, December 15, 2011

How to Make a Blog Background With Gimp

Blog Backgrounds - How to Make Your Own Blog Background

By Deborah Erickson

I have been using blog skins from various websites to decorate my blog, so I thought it would be fun to create my own. Here are the steps to creating your own blog background.
1. Download a photoshop type program. One that worked for me is Gimp and it is free.
2. First create a new project and set the image size at 1650x1000 pixels.
3. I also opened the layer window. If you are using Gimp you can find this window under the heading window, dockable dialogue, and layer.
4. Select a background color for your blog center and paint the whole background this color.
5. Open the other pictures or images you want to use for side bars in your blog background. Then crop the pictures to the dimensions of 450x1000 pixels
6. I then pasted my images onto my colored background. The middle section of your blog background needs to be about around 665 pixels, so you will be able to read your text on your blog.
6. The most tricky part is creating layers. Everytime you paste a new image onto your background you need to hit the layer button on the toolbar and create a new layer, so you can resize this image or move it without moving the whole page. You can view all you layers in the layers window, so it will be easy to navigate between layers if you need to.
7. Then add embellishments and borders. Be creative. For my border I cut out an image from one of my pictures and then repeated the image with copy and paste.
8. Save your blog background in gimp under file extension.xcf so you will be able to edit later if you need to.
9. After saving your photo in gimp you have to save the picture again under file extension.jpeg, so the picture will be able to be seen on your blog.
10. Next create an account at This is another free service.
11. Upload your picture on to their server and click the Save & Get Links button.
12. Under the picture there are four links, Copy the info from the directlink and
paste the info in notepad or word you are going to need it in a minute.
13. Go to your blogger page click customize, Pick New Template
14. Select Minima, which is the first option.
15. Find Edit HTML. This is the trick part so make sure you follow the directions exactly.
16. Open the code and look for the information that looks exactly like this. Delete the code below.

body {
font:x-small Georgia Serif;
font-size/* */:/**/small;
font-size: /**/small;
text-align: center;

17. In place of the code paste the following code. Place your direct link where it says paste your photo bucket direct link here.
body {
background-image: url('paste your photo bucket directlink here. ');
background-position: center;
background-attachment: fixed;
font:x-small Georgia Serif;
font-size/* */:/**/small;
font-size: /**/small;

18. Save and view Blog
Congratulations! You have a customized blog.

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Creating Logos With Gimp In 15 Easy Steps

Here is a tutorial by Beverly Houston:

15 Easy Steps to Creating an Easy Logo Using GIMP in No Time

You believe in doing things on your own, and you want to design your own easy logo. But you don't know which application or software to use.
Have you ever tried GIMP software?
Shed all your worries, I will tell you how to use the GIMP to create a brand mark...
Although you may have all the skills to create a good business icon, but every designer needs the correct and appropriate tools for designing. GIMP is a very good application which will not only provide with all the assets of art, but also enhance your creativity.
GIMP is an easy logo creator. Using this application, you can make a symbol as good as a professional in just a few minutes. Following steps will show you how to do that:
1. Open up your GIMP application.
2. Write the text of the insignia (not more than two or three words). This text would be appearing with your business icon. You can choose any font from the options available, but remember that your choice of font should go with the personality of your brand name. You can also decide which color you want your text to be.
3. Now, to transform you text into a real symbol, you need to create a path. You can draw any figure or a shape that you have in mind. It could be a curve or a square or anything. For this purpose you will have to use the paths-tool (B).
4. You will have to form closed points around your text to resemble a shape. You can move those points around till you are satisfied with the placement of the shape.
5. You can see dashed lines? These are to adjust the size and shape of your figure. You can drag those dashed lines to even out your shape.
6. Press enter.
7. After pressing enter, you will be having a selection of the path you have just drawn. On that new selection, create an empty layer. Choose a suitable background color.
8. Now open the gradient tool and look at the settings on the picture.
9. Now drag the gradient on the empty layer to fill the selection with it.
10. Adjust the color brightness and contrast according to your taste.
11. Now, you could give more depth to your business icon by adding the shadow effect.
12. In the layers-dialogue, right-click the layer with the color - Alpha to selection.
13. Give a new layer to the form layer.
14. Choose a color for this form and set the opacity.
15. You can use the Move-Tool to move your active layer, to make adjustments if any.
You're done! Your design is ready with the use of an uncomplicated brand mark maker.
All you need is a good software for creating an easy logo and voila! Here you are with the best graphic design for your corporation.
Beverly Houston works as a Senior Design Consultant at a Professional Logo Design Company. For more information on easy logo creator find her competitive rates at Logo Design Consultant.
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